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Hell Has Never Looked So Good- Diablo 4 Review

Updated: Jun 5, 2023


an image showing the demon Lilith glaring towards the screen

Image: Activision Blizzard


Hey fellow gamers! If you're anything like me, the announcement of Diablo 4 sent a thrill through your gaming sensibilities. As someone who's sunk countless hours into the previous Diablo games, I've been anxious to dive into the latest entry of this venerable franchise. Has Blizzard managed to once again capture the grim charm of the world of Sanctuary, and the addictive grind that made the previous games such titans of the action RPG genre? Let's journey into the shadows and see what we discover in this Diablo 4 review.

 

Gameplay (8.5/10)


As fans would expect, Diablo 4 brings back the classic isometric, hack-and-slash gameplay that defines the series. The classes are varied, each boasting a unique set of abilities that cater to different playstyles. From the brutal Barbarian to the enigmatic Sorceress, character customization is as deep and satisfying as ever.

What stood out to me is the world structure, as Diablo 4 introduces a more open-world experience compared to its predecessors. There's an expansive world to explore, filled with dangerous dungeons and rewarding secrets to uncover. This adds a degree of exploration and discovery that I found to be a nice progression from previous games.

The combat feels smooth and weighty, with impactful abilities that make you feel truly powerful. The loot system, a core part of any Diablo game, has been refined and delivers a constant stream of new weapons and gear that offer noticeable upgrades to your character.

However, this complexity is also one of the game's weaknesses. For newcomers to the franchise, or even casual players, the breadth of systems and mechanics can be a bit overwhelming, and the game could do a better job of easing players into these elements.

 

Graphics and Sound (9/10)


From a visual standpoint, Diablo 4 is stunning. It strikes a fine balance between maintaining the dark, gothic aesthetic of the original games while pushing forward with some truly impressive graphical fidelity. The environments are varied and visually impressive, whether you're trudging through a corpse-filled swamp or exploring a haunting, torch-lit crypt.

The soundscape of Diablo 4 deserves equal praise. The voice acting is superb, lending a lot of personality to the various characters you'll encounter. The game's soundtrack is suitably epic and foreboding, capturing the atmosphere of the game perfectly. The sound design, from the growls of the monsters to the clash of weapons, truly enhances the immersion.

 

Story and Characters (8/10)


On the narrative front, Diablo 4 delivers a suitably epic and dark tale filled with demons, gods, and plenty of magic. However, it does sometimes fall prey to the pitfall of many loot-driven games: the story can become secondary to the gameplay. The plot is interesting, but it often gets overshadowed by the thrill of combat and the hunt for better gear.

The characters, both the main ones and the NPCs, are well-written, with compelling motivations and personalities. The voice acting brings them to life, and the dialogue is crisp and engaging. The world is steeped in lore, and there are plenty of fascinating tidbits to discover for those who take the time to delve into it.

 

Conclusion


Diablo 4 is a more than worthy entry into the iconic franchise. It captures the essence of what makes the Diablo series so addictive and enjoyable, while introducing some compelling new elements. The open-world design, improved visuals, and depth of gameplay make for an experience that's both familiar and fresh.

Sure, it's not without its flaws. The story could be more integrated into the gameplay, and the game's systems can be overwhelming for new players. But these are minor gripes in an otherwise outstanding game. For veterans of the series and newcomers alike, Diablo 4 is a dark descent worth taking.


Overall Score 8.7/10




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